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Ulta roars ahead in Q2; on track to open 100 stores and launch TV advertising


Bolingbrook, Ill. -- Fast-growing Ulta Beauty shows no signs of losing its momentum as the specialty retailer reported better than-expected results for the second quarter and raised its guidance.

On its quarterly earnings call, Ulta said it will launch a national television advertising campaign.

Ulta’s net profits increased 8.5% to $74.2 million, from $60.8 million in the year-ago period, helped by an improved online assortment and less overall discounting.

Net sales jumped 19.4% to $877 million, up from $734.2 million for the same period a year ago. E-commerce sales skyrocketed 43.4% to $36.1 million from $25.2 million in the year ago period, representing 120 basis points of the total company comparable sales increase of 10.1%.

Same-store sales rose 10.1% (with online sales representing 120 basis points of the total), compared to an increase of 9.6% last year.

Retail comparable sales increased 8.9%, including salon comparable sales growth of 10.1%.

As previously announced, Ulta expects to open 100 stores in 2015 and drive comparable sales in the range of 8% to 10%.

“The Ulta Beauty team achieved outstanding results in the second quarter, with top line momentum delivering better than expected earnings growth,” said Mary Dillon, CEO. “Strong traffic growth drove healthy comparable sales increases across stores, salon and e-commerce, while average ticket growth also contributed. An exciting pipeline of new products, combined with increasing effectiveness of our marketing strategies, drove market share gains across all categories.”

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